JTK1 Jet King
unregistered, on may 06, 2005 2 of 3 people found this review helpful
Sound: OK, when I first played it through a JCM100 head plus quad box in the music store, it sounded brilliant. I play all sorts of rock from '70s through to metal (not nu-metal though, can't stand that shit), and I have an special place in my heart for the blues, and this guitar was highly responsive to all styles. The bridge in hum mode was especially beautiful, reminding me of the bridge output for a Les Paul, and the neck pickup in single coil mode (coil-tap on) is so bluesy it makes you want to start singing along with the sweet sound it makes about your dead woman and how the cat left you (or the other way around whatever). Clean, dirty, whatever, it sounded awesome, and it was on special so, hey, what did I have to lose?
Once I brought it home I put it up against my Ibanez GRX40 which I already knew was a pile of crap, and this guitar just re-affirmed this. Through my little Peavey Rage practice amp the difference in the two was unbelievable. Though it must be said, there's a noticeable drop in sound when the coils are tapped and because there's only one volume control you can't even rig it so that you have one pup tapped and both at the same output level so you can flick between them, which is what I do in a few songs. A bit annoying. Also, while I have no complaints about the bridge hum I've noticed that the neck hum is a bit muddy when I play it through my 80 watt Marshall Valvestate, especially on the clean channel. Because I can't afford a better amp, I think I'll have to replace both pups to get a bit more grunt and tone. I play through a Boss ME-6 which, again, isn't the best floor pedal set-up but all I can afford, and it sounds very nice in most settings. And through a Boss Metal Zone, this JTK1 could make small animals' brains haemorrage.
As I said, rock and blues are my staple, and this axe suits me to a tee. I love its looks and the sound it makes is great for my style - fat, humbucking overdriven sounds and twangy bluesy tones from the tapped pups, and a very acceptable clean sound, though it could be better with some nicer pickups. Tonally speaking, there are a total of 8 different pickup settings so you've got a great variety, though I must say the two pups on tapped mode together sound a bit weak. Overall though, this guitar with stock pups shits all over other guitars I've heard and played (like Mex Strats, most Epis and definitely most Ibanez guitars I've played; I've read reviews where guys have put it against Gibson Les Pauls and it was hard to tell the difference. After playing it, I believe it); with some EMGs or SD hums it would be an absolute killer of a guitar. // 8
Action, Fit & Finish: When I played and bought it, the JTK1 was set up with a medium-low action, which was brilliant. I couldn't see any flaws in the body or the hardware (otherwise I wouldn't have bought it). After you get home and play it for a while, though, that's when you notice more problems you missed in the store. First, the easily solved problems. While I love the action it was set at, the bridge hum was as a result so damn close to the strings that every palm-mute shoved the strings right up against it - I had to lower the pickup height, but that didn't appear to affect the sound at all, thank Christ. The strings it was supplied with were like nylon strings, so as soon as I wore them out I replaced them with D'Addario. 46 gauge. Now, the more serious niggles - at the ninth fret there's a slight buzz, which isn't really noticeable unless you are really keen of ear, but nevertheless takes away from this axe somewhat.
The pickup selector can be extremely noisy when switching - when playing a softer song and switching, it can be a tad embarrassing to hear that very audible "click." To add to that, the selector feels like it's going to come off the guitar every time you touch it - very loose and unstable. The tone/volume knobs are a bit shaky too. And maybe it's just the way I play, but I find that the coil taps, which are situated at the bottom left of the guitar body, are very easy to flick on accidentally if you're playing big chords, but then again, maybe it's just the way I play. One last niggle - the input jack is shit. Loose (on both sides) and the screws to fit the plate in aren't even the same damn size! I've had to take it off and screw the jack in more times than I care to remember. Once during a recording session it got so loose that all I got through the amp was a buzzing noise.
Another thing to get fixed up (and having lost the receipt, no warranty). Apart from that though, everything else is pretty good. Again, finish is stunning, the maple neck and rosewood fingerboard feel lovely and the bridge, nut and tuners are all extremely sturdy. The tuners, even though they're snot green, perform admirably - smooth turning and they keep the strings beautifully in tune. Even after a full set the strings are almost perfectly tuned (I say "almost" because nothing is ever absolutely perfect). // 8
Overall Impression: After all my bitching, I love this guitar. It was my first really professional instrument, and it suits my playing style really well, and the different tones I can wring from it make up for any niggles that it throws my way. It is indeed well worth buying and fixing up all the little crappy problems such as cheap hardware, even pick-up changing, which I will do soon. Due to its looks and its Vintage tone with stock pups, it probably won't suit everyone (I'm thinking speed, thrash or nu-metallers here) but it works a charm for any other kind of rock or blues. The addition of separate controls for each pup would have been ideal, but hey, nothing's perfect. If this were lost/stolen, I'd be heartbroken. I'd probably go out and get another one, and then go hunting for the bugger who did it and throw him off a bridge with weighted shoes.
I've been playing for almost 12 years, but I've never had any formal training or lessons, thus I sound like I've been playing for a lot less. However, I'm fairly competent and know a good guitar when I play it - and this is real value for money. I have two other guitars, a Strat copy (which I hate more and more everyday - time for a Hendrix-style sacrificing, I think) and an Ibanez GRX40 which I'm keeping as a backup guitar (but which will be refurbished from top-to-bottom), or, if that fails, to smash on stage one day. The JTK1 saved me from the frustration of playing the GRX full time, and for that I am truly grateful to it. Now all I need is a Strat, a Les Paul, and possibly a PRS - then I'll be content. // 8
JTK1 Jet King
Redwood, on april 18, 2005 1 of 1 people found this review helpful
Features: It is a pretty new model, made by Ibanez. It has twenty three frets, which is one of my only complaints, I prefer 24. The neck isn't spectacularly great or awful, but it is just right for soloing on extended scales and whatnot. It comes in three colors, mine is a sweet trans red, and it has an awesome retro body. String through the body, three way Switch, one tone, one volume, and the greatest thing to ever hit the electric guitar, the coil tapping system. Another problem (trust me there aren't many) is that the tuners are the color of mucus. // 8
Sound: I play folk/blues rock, and a lot of oldies/classic rock. It isn't solely for that though, I can crank up the distortion and play any hard rock thing, or go for a nice clean sound, you can do pretty much anything with this guitar. I use it with a crappy little guitar research amp, but I have a Zoom 606 pedal, so that's alright. The sound can reach anything from les paul to Strat, and anything in between. This is one of hte most versatile guitars on the market, and can fit any sound. // 10
Action, Fit & Finish: I have absolutely no complaints, but it looked like the Sam Ash people chipped it in one spot. That one spot gets covered by my strap, and I won't complain about one tiny blemish in comparison with the only guitar I'll ever need in my whole life. // 10
Reliability & Durability: I haven't done too much live playing with it, but from what I have done, I can say that this is one guitar that you can rely on with your life. // 10
Overall Impression: In my opinion, the best guitar on the market, it can fit any style of playing, and is the perfect guitar for an intermediate or expert player. I could compare it to any guitar, and still prefer mine. // 10
JTK1 Jet King
unregistered, on december 25, 2003 0 of 0 people found this review helpful
Price paid: $ 450
Purchased from: Gordons Music
Features: This model is a new series from Ibanez called the jet king. It has 22 frets, solid body with a burnt cherry sunburst finish. For pickups it has 2 nickel plated humbuckers and has 2 switches for single coil tapping (very cool) and also a 3 way pickup selector. Some of the things I did like about it is the thru body stringing which makes it wicked stable for low tuning and that the neck is super slim and fast. It has a 5 piece basswood body which makes it light for those long gigs. And still has the tone of mahogany. The only thing I replaced were the pickups an EMG 81 and an EMG 85, which made it scream after. // 10
Sound: It definitely fits my style of music since I love playing it all from deftones to the doors. I use an Ibanez half stack with a Boss GT-3 floor effects for all my distortion and clean needs. The guitar when in the clean channel gives a very clean full sound, but once in overdrive it took me a lot of tinkering with my amp and multi effects to get the clean really crunchy distortion I like, when tuned down to a D or C it gets very muddy thus for I got the EMG pickups. The guitar gives lots of variety due to the 2 tap switches and the 3-way selector it suits everyone's needs. Overall I love the guitar but I would have liked it more with more high output pickups. // 6
Action, Fit & Finish: Outta the factory the guitar was set up quite well, the action was low, which I'm not use to because I normally play a 7 string which has to have high action but I liked it alot. Everything on the guitar met to my standards all look clean and well built except for a little noise in the pickup selector. // 10
Reliability & Durability: I have had this guitar for quite a while and it is a road worthy guitar it has withstanded a lot of heavy playing and some abuse :\ a few woops here and there dropping it the usual. And it still played awesome the hardware and finish are bulletproof, its a very tough guitar. The strap buttons I took off and put strap locks on it. Because I don't trust anything else. And I would have a backup because you never know. // 10
Overall Impression: With the wide style that I play this guitar is definitely a good match for me, and I have been playing for 5 years and went through my fair share of guitars and this is one of my top 3 favorite due to the fact I've had it for almost 6 months now. I also own an Ibanez Uv7, and an Schecter 006 Elite. Its a very well made guitar for a low price and its also a well playing guitar to. But I'm just a fan of the more high out pickups instead of the pickups trying to make the "Vintage" sounds. It stacks up quite well to me Schecter, which is a 600-dollar guitar, I choose this one because of some of the originals looks, and the original features such as the coil tap switches. I recommend this guitar to anyone who likes to play all types of music. it is very stable and extremely tough. I recommend it to beginners and more experienced players to. -eric // 8